I am using this reference for ornamentation from the Foreword of J.S. Bach 16 well-known original pieces (Henle). The ornament in bar 9 looks like "idem" but the swoosh comes at the end (instead of at the beginning).

I would appreciate advice on how to realise this.

Wikipedia calls this a slide: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Slide_(musical_ornament) — but again the swoosh is at the beginning...

Allemande m. 9

Schiff doesn't ornament the G5 at first; during the repeat it sounds like a short upward scale:

1 Answer 1


First, idem is not the name of an ornament but a Latin word meaning "the same." The ornament you're referring to, therefore, is called Doppelt-Cadence, but is the second example of that ornament.

But the ornament you're asking about is called Schleifer. While the forms given in the Wikipedia article you link to show the swoosh at the beginning, this is the form preferred by Bach (and, I suppose, by everyone else in 18th-century Germany).

The ornament is explained in C. P. E. Bach's Versuch über die wahre Art das Clavier zu spielen as two quick notes ascending to the main note. (The Schleifer von dreyen Nötgen has a different symbol and is performed somewhat differently.)

The German text is available on Wikisource, as are the tables of figures. The sign used in the Allemande is seen at figure 88(a) in table 6.

Your Answer

By clicking “Post Your Answer”, you agree to our terms of service and acknowledge you have read our privacy policy.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.